Spent some time idly watching this woman attempting - with much difficulty - to climb the steep embankment of the railway, on her way across the tracks. This is a common shortcut, which can even get quite crowded, and a regular 'desire line' forms. However on this day the usual path had been momentarily obliterated by a light snow fall and this woman cast of sideways, getting stuck in an awkward patch and continually losing her foothold. After several minutes she took off her gloves in an attempt to use her hands, and some time after that she made the sign of the cross. And then, finally, she got to the top.
I don't understand quite why people take this route; it is not near a train station, so I don't think it is about avoiding fares. So where are they going? Can someone tell me? Meantime, it seems quintessentially Russian - to deliberately take another even more difficult path rather than just follow the proscribed, err, legal one (that is, under the railway bridge and along the road).
And - somehow - it sums up many things about being here, now that I am about to leave. New job starting in London in three weeks time. So, sad to go and so happy to be going home.